PUNXSUTAWNEY — The Punxsutawney chapter of the Daughters of American Revolution (DAR) would like to encourage everyone to stand up and cheer during the celebration of Constitution Week, but to also take time to learn more about this very important document.
Friday, Mayor James Wehrle proclaimed Constitution Week in Punxsy, a commemoration — that is also one of this country’s least known official observances — of one of America’s most important documents.
DAR Regent Jan Harrold said the group wants each chapter to spread awareness in their communities during Constitution Week, and in order to do that in this community, Wehrle drew up his proclamation for the Punxsy chapter declaring Constitution Week.
Harrold also said that Punxsutawney Area School District Superintendent Dr. Keith Wolfe has agreed to allow students who read the morning announcements at the middle and high schools to read a "Constitution Minute" each day this week.
DAR Secretary Donna Anderson said throughout the year, DAR has presented small tidbits of information published monthly in its "Meeting Minutes" in The Punxsutawney Spirit.
"It keeps the community aware of the importance of the Constitution, and it also protects the public and their freedom," she said.
According to DAR, the Constitution stands as a testament to the tenacity of Americans throughout history to maintain their liberties and freedom, and to ensure those unalienable rights to every American.
The tradition of celebrating the Constitution began in 1955, when DAR petitioned Congress to set aside Sept. 17 through Sept. 23 annually to be dedicated for the observance of Constitution Week.
The resolution was later adopted by the U.S. Congress and signed into Public Law Aug. 2, 1956, by President Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Harrold said the goals of the celebration are to emphasize citizens’ responsibilities for protecting and defending the Constitution, preserving it for posterity; informing people that the Constitution is the basis for America’s great heritage and the foundation for the American way of life; and encouraging the study of the historical events which led to the framing of the Constitution in September 1787.
Anderson said DAR welcomes women of all ages, such as college student Augusta Geer, the Constitution chair. Geer said she appreciates the Constitution and what it does for everyone.
Harrold said today, the Constitution stands as an icon of freedom for people around the world.
“We must remember and teach that those who wrote the Constitution believed that no government can create freedom, but that government must guard freedom rather than encroach upon the freedoms of its people," said Merry Ann T. Wright, DAR president general.
Known as the largest women’s patriotic organization in the world, DAR has more than 165,000 members, with about 3,000 chapters in all 50 states and 11 foreign countries.
For more information about DAR and its programs, visit www.dar.org .